16 Auburn players sidelined by the coronavirus

Auburn head coach Guz Malzahn looks on during a time out against Georgia during a 27-10 loss Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018, in Athens.

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Auburn head coach Guz Malzahn looks on during a time out against Georgia during a 27-10 loss Saturday, Nov. 10, 2018, in Athens.

AUBURN, Ala. — Auburn expects to return to practice Monday minus 16 players sidelined after positive COVID-19 tests.

Coach Gus Malzahn said Sunday night that the Tigers had five positives early in the week and four more after additional testing Thursday. With contact tracing, seven others who had close contact with them face a mandatory 14-day quarantine.

“We had two position groups where we did not have enough guys,” coach Gus Malzahn said Sunday night. He declined to say which positions.

Malzahn said players didn’t want to attend meetings Thursday after the police shooting of Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wis.

Players who test positive must stay isolated for 10 days followed by a seven-day reacclimation process.

The Tigers haven’t practiced since Tuesday and canceled a planned scrimmage on Saturday. Malzahn said players will be tested Sundays and Thursdays.

The Tigers are scheduled to open the season Sept. 26 against Kentucky. Georgia’s home opener will be Oct. 3 against Auburn.